The Titanic was one of the most iconic and tragic maritime disasters in history, and it is often referred to as the “unsinkable” ship. But, was it actually the first cruise ship to sink?
The answer is no. While the Titanic was certainly one of the most noteworthy disasters, there have been other cruise ships that have met a similar fate over the years. In fact, some cruise ships have sunk even before the Titanic did in 1912.
One such example is the SS Eastland. This steamship was built in 1902 and was designed to transport passengers across Lake Michigan between Chicago and Michigan City. The ship became top-heavy during a port stop in 1915, causing it to capsize in the Chicago River and killing 844 people on board.
The RMS Lusitania, another famous passenger liner, also sank before the Titanic did in 1915. Built by Cunard Line for transatlantic crossings between Liverpool and New York, this vessel tragically went down after being struck by a German torpedo off Ireland’s coast, killing 1,198 people onboard.
In addition to these two well-known vessels, there have been several other cruise ships that were destroyed before or after the Titanic sank. In 1873, for instance, an Italian steamer called the SS Ville du Havre, collided with another vessel off Nova Scotia and sank with only five survivors out of 652 passengers on board. Similarly, the SS Morro Castle, which sailed between New York City and Havana in 1934 had a disastrous fire on board that killed 137 people while still at sea.
In conclusion, while the Titanic may be remembered as one of history’s most famous maritime disasters due to its size and scale of loss of life, it was not actually the first cruise ship to sink. It is important to remember that there were numerous other ships that went down before or after it did due to different reasons such as mechanical failure or hostile attack from enemies.